Thursday, March 31, 2011

Old Polar

Disclaimer:  I consider myself a writer who takes photographs, not a photographer who writes.  I have no particular insight or expertise regarding photography other than what I have learned through trial and error or from online tutorials. 

Disclaimers aside, I am really digging a particular preset in my Adobe Lightroom photo editing software.  I really have not dabbled in the world of presets in the way of buying them from professionals or saving my own.  I just use what's already over there in my left-side toolbar.  And today, while screwing around on some photos for my 365 Project , I discovered a very nifty little preset called Old Polar and I can't believe we haven't met before and already fallen in love and moved to the suburbs together in my minivan.  I like it that much.  It's different without being crazy.  Colorful without being too alien.  A little retro.  I'm digging it.

These photos were a little overexposed so it was great to find a preset that embraced my manual ineptitude and made it look like I did that on purpose.  I mean, I totally did that on purpose, with this exact preset in mind.  Riiiiiight.

 I like how it makes their eyes and mouths pop, especially Em's because I think they're her best features.  And both  my kids have wicked eyelashes so the fact that the clarity was bumped up to +85 or so never hurts, either.

Awwww, impromptu snuggle.  They do love each other!

I know I need to branch out photographically, and presets would be a great place to start, since they give your photos a whole new look with minimal effort on the editing side.  I'm always looking for a shortcut.

They are still a bit grainy, which annoys me, but there's not much I can do about that other than get better at noise reduction (feel free to give me some tips!) and wait until we can get outside to shoot in natural light.  This was a natural and artificial light combo shoot, and I can tell when I was using natural light and when I wasn't.

Like this one:

Grainy but hilarious.  I pumped up the Luminance to +100 and I think it makes him look a little bit too surreal, but I'm just learning.  Like I said, writer who takes photos; not the other way around.

It even works on action shots, like Jax's KO punch to Em's face.

Oh, impromptu snuggles don't last long.

So, photographers extraordinaire, what Lightroom Presets do you use and love?  Keep in mind my style of photos, if you will.  If you're persuasive enough, I might just go buy one!

Sidenote:  Ironically, after writing this, I went to Willette's website (the photographer who created the Joy of Luck and Joy of Love photo tutorials I participated in lately) and she had 6 free Lightroom presets available for download!  You have to go to her facebook page and "like" her and then you can download them for free!  I haven't played with them yet, but it's a step in the right direction!


Kara said...

I think these are great. I love wicked eyelashes. I was so glad my littles got those from the mister. At least you can talk about noise reduction and overexposures. I do what I can in Picnik, but I really want to learn so much more.

XLMIC said...

Those two portraits of her that are slightly over-exposed DO work really well! Nicely done :)

BabyDealsDujour said...

Love those photos!

Now following front
We track all of the daily baby deals in real-time. Would love for you to stop by and follow back!

Ada said...

Love the Lemonade Blogs! Those pictures are really sweet and I like the retro quality of them!

Joelle said...

*I* think you're pictures look fantastic! Your kids are so sweet and beautiful! You should definitely be proud of them, and all the pictures you take!

Thanks for linking up today! Hope you're having a wonderful Friday!


Crystal said...

Beautiful pictures!!! Can't to read and see more =)

I'm Jennifer. said...

Your photos are works of art. And those eyes. Those wide blue baby eyes! (*melting*)

AJBrush said...

This was such a cute post! I love your photography & writing! You have an adorable blog & I'm glad I stopped by (thanks to {Where We Love} Happy Hour)!


Greta [NLDesigns] said...

very cute kids, cute pictures. so fun! new follower from the find new friends weekend blog hop :)


Faith said...

These are so adorable!!! Your little Em is simply kissable. Gotta love baby eyes and sweet baby lips. I have been looking forward to trying out Lightroom for awhile now - I think your post may have been the straw that breaks the camel's back. As a photographer who sometimes writes - I'm totally justified, right?! :)

Mommy used to be so pretty... said...

ACK! You may win me over to learning how to use photo editing software yet!

I keep resisting...

I am kind of a space cadet, one more thing to learn may send me over the edge...


And I love shiny things...

And I love No. 7, saw she loved you, and now I am a fan!

YAY! And your children are amazingly adorable.

Love, Mommy.

Rosann said...

Wow, great photos! Your children are adorable. Ok, stupid question here...did you have to buy the software or is it already on your computer as part of your adobe program? I'm not a techy person at all! {Some days I'm amazed I'm able to post pictures in my blog posts!} But my husband is super I'm wondering if this is something he can easily put on my computer for me so I can play with it a bit. If you have to buy it, what's the cost..if you don't mind me asking.

Thanks for the great post.


Becky said...

You have to go to Adobe's website and download a free trial--it's called Adobe Lightroom and it's like Photoshop but it's not as professional. More for the average person instead of "real" photographers. Give it a try and see if you like it! I can't imagine not having it now!